Medical notes indicate Savita Halappanavar made a request for a termination

Friday 18 January 2013 11.46
Praveen Halappanavar has always maintained that Savita had requested a termination on several occasions
Praveen Halappanavar has always maintained that Savita had requested a termination on several occasions

Medical notes by the consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist that treated Savita Halappanavar indicate that she made a request for the termination of her pregnancy.

It is the first official confirmation of the request since the case became public three months ago and comes before the inquest into her death opens in Galway on Friday.

The request was made within days of her admission to the hospital on 21 October.

The notes also indicate that it was not possible to comply with the request.

Her life was not believed to have been at risk at the time.

The 31-year-old dentist from India was 17 weeks pregnant and was miscarrying when she attended the hospital on 21 October complaining of back pain.

She died a week later on 28 October.

Her husband Praveen always maintained that she requested a termination of pregnancy on several occasions but was denied this.

He said that some hospital records released at an early stage recorded requests for tea, toast and an extra pillow but not a termination.

The case attracted national and international attention and reopened the debate on abortion in Ireland and resulted in calls from her family for a public inquiry.

Tomorrow's inquest before coroner Dr Ciaran MacLoughlin will establish which parties are seeking legal representation.

It will also determine if all documents have been disclosed and if all witnesses statements are ready.

The inquest will involve around 50 statements and not all of these are yet completed.

It is understood that the pathologist's report is not yet ready.

A date will also be set for the inquest proper, which is expected to last around a week in March.

Two separate investigations are under way into the issue and related matters by the HSE and the Health Information and Quality Authority.